Monday, December 2, 2013

Getting in early for Christmas: traditional Christmas fruit cake

 As you well know, there’s nothing I love more than cooking up a storm in the kitchen and baking a few tasty treats for my family. Christmas is one of my favorite times of year for cooking and I love to experiment with seasonal recipes, which fill the house with delicious smells of spices and baking. Take a look at my earlier recipe  for Lucky Leaf caramel apple and cranberry pie, which is the perfect dessert for Thanksgiving.

Since making this delightful dessert, I’ve been inspired to start preparing for some Christmas bakes! Yes, I know we’ve got almost two months to go until the big day; but what I’ve got in mind takes quite a bit of prep, if you’re going to do it properly! I’m set on making a traditional English Christmas cake. You can sometimes buy these in stores around Christmas, but I’m determined to make my own for that truly authentic flavor.

A Christmas cake is a deliciously dark, moist and heavy fruitcake, traditionally made using brandy - so it’s definitely one for adults! I did some research online, comparing recipes, and I came across this one by British celebrity chef Delia Smith which I think sounds perfect. The key to a beautiful, moist cake is soaking the dried fruits in brandy overnight. After soaking for twelve hours, the fruit will shine like jewels in their brandy bath and give the cake that gorgeous texture and density I’m looking for – as well as a wonderfully boozy flavor.

As I was searching online, I happened to come across a great place to source of all the dried fruit that I need.  Traidcraft have a wide selection of organic foods available to buy online; all of the products are Fair Trade, so I felt happy knowing that my cooking is having a positive impact on the  world. In my excitement, I didn’t actually realize that this was a UK based company, so unfortunately I won’t be able to get my hands on these items. However, it has inspired me to source more Fair Trade ingredients for my cakes and I’ll be keeping my eyes peeled at the grocery store for Fair Trade fruit.

Now for the fun bit. Of course I want my cake to be delicious, but I also want it to look great. When it comes to decorations, I plan on tying a tasteful tartan bow around my cake and using colored sugar paste to make some holly for the top. I’m also thinking about using some silver balls to bring it to life, for a festival feel. I’ve seen loads of cute decorations that can really make a Christmas cake stand out, including things like miniature reindeers that would look perfect strolling across the top of my cake.

I don’t know about you, but I’m already getting excited for Christmas!

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1 comment:

Janet W. said...

That looks absolutely delicious! I just made an apple pie for Thanksgiving that turned out pretty good!

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Disclosure: The reviews and or opinions on this blog are my own opinions, . No compensation was received. All opinions are my own. This is a unofficial fan site that is not affiliated with the Walt Disney Company or Disney theme parks.